post tension(ing): a monument to yesterday's comfort

Greer Taylor - post tension(ing): a monument to yesterday's comfort - reIMAGINE Sculpture Prize 2019
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Awarded the reIMAGINE Sculpture Project Prize

The reIMAGINE Sculpture Project called for artists, via an EOI application process, to make works from items destined for landfill.  After discussing with the recycling centre staff the issues that the Recycling Centre faces, I chose to work with discarded chairs… it seems chairs and furniture in general, contribute a large proportion of hard waste — they often only need a small repair.

The exhibition coincided with the 2019 World Environment Day festival run by the Shoalhaven City Council.


Post tensioning is an engineering technique that uses cables threaded through a structure to keep it stable.

The steps involved in the life of a product: designing-making-transporting-desiring-buying-energy consumption are like beads on a cable, post-tensioned by its perceived value and ongoing usage. When we choose to discard a product the line of tension breaks, each bead falling into irrelevance.

This ‘monument’ is a reminder that our choices keep the post-tensioning in place …or not.

It is also a reminder to consider carefully what systems we thread our tension through (what systems do we post tension?). Question everything! Are you holding together only that which serves our future?

post tension(ing): a monument to yesterday’s comfort, discarded wooden chairs, cable, steel poles, winch, chain, paint, 450 x 400 x 100 cm

click on images to see larger versions

click on images to see larger versions

I would like to express my gratitude to:

  • Deborah Redwood, Tania Morandi, Monica Willis who assisted throughout the process.
  • Thanks to all of you who kept your eyes open for chairs and kept them out of landfill.
  • Thank you Fiona Schreurs and her team at Shoalhaven City Council for making this project happen.

It was an honour to be selected for the prize* by a respected group of judges:

  • John Monteleone – Programme Director, Art Gallery of Wollongong
  • Bronwyn Coulston – Director, Shoalhaven Regional Gallery
  • James Birkett – Artist and Education Officer, Bundanon
  • David Ball – Sculptor

*The prize included a 2 week residence at Bundanon — see images of my time there HERE

reIMAGINE Sculpture Project exhibition dates were: 20 May – 9 June 2019